This piece originally posted at Filmstruck
Captain Al Chester (Terence Kilburn) grabs a glass of water and asks Major Jeff Cummings (Marshall Thompson), “You ever think of trying sleep instead of Benzedrine?” Popping pills freely to keep alert, Major Cummings is investigating the mysterious death of a local man, Jack Griselle, found dead in the woods near his farm. The two military men work at an air force base in Winthrop, Manitoba, Canada. The base uses atomic energy to boost its radar so they can spy on the Russians. But the mysterious death bothers them and the local authorities refuse to allow the U.S. military to conduct an autopsy. The year is 1958 and if you haven’t already guessed that the base’s atomic energy is going to play a big part in all of this, you’re not very familiar with 1950s sci-fi. And if you’re not, welcome to FIEND WITHOUT A FACE (’58), not only one of the best B movies ever made, but a great primer for anyone looking to enter the world of low-budget 1950s sci-fi horror.